By James McCartney – Senior Numismatist, Stack’s Bowers ……
Although often overshadowed by the 1884-S, the 1883-S Morgan dollar presents a surprising challenge to collectors in Mint State. While the mintage was moderately large at 6,250,000 pieces, the 1883-S is one of the few issues that saw active circulation beginning in the 19th century. Worn survivors can be located with ease, but Mint State coins are elusive in today’s market. The issue becomes incredibly scarce in Gem, with only about 100 coins known. At the Superb level, they are essentially unobtainable, and even more so with any degree of prooflike contrast.
Stack’s Bowers is thrilled to present the sole finest graded 1883-S Morgan dollar in lot 1230 of our August 2020 Las Vegas Auction, certified MS-67+ PL (PCGS).
This piece can be traced back 116 years to the Chapman brothers’ sale of the legendary John G. Mills Collection in April 1904. Simply described as “Uncirculated, with Proof surfaces” in lot 767, it was sold to John M. Clapp for $2.25. It did not appear at auction again for 93 years, when we offered it as lot 2265 in the Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection, Part II, in April 1997. There we described it as “one of the most important Morgan dollars to come to market in our generation.”
Now, a quarter-century later, we can confidently make the same assertion, as it sits at the top of the PCGS Population Report across all categories.
Faint champagne iridescence enhances the otherwise brilliant surfaces of this incredible Superb Gem. Stark prooflike reflectivity is seen in the fields on both sides, framing the satiny, lustrous devices. All elements are intricately defined and virtually pristine beneath magnification. A true pinnacle of both execution and preservation.
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This MS-67+ PL (PCGS) CAC 1883-S dollar will be offered in Rarities Night of our August 2020 Las Vegas Auction, accompanying highlights from the Sherwood Collection of Civil War Tokens, the ESM Collection of Large Cents, selections from the Anthony J. Taraszka Collection of Early Eagles, selections from the D. Brent Pogue Collection and many other rarities. The sale is will be available for bidding and viewing on our website www.StacksBowers.com, or you may contact us to secure a copy of the printed catalog. Also, download our mobile app to view and participate in our auctions via your Android or Apple device.